Theme 3: Development is both Continuous and
IQ scores show both stability and
random fluctuations overtime
Popularity may or may not vary
Discontinuity: stages provide
Gender: Sex Differences and Sex Roles
Gender is salient and, not surprisingly, important.
Boys and girls have play preferences: By 4 years of age:
same sex playfriends
social orientations (type of play)
What causes these preferences?
How does sex-typed kn
Children become more flexible in their views concurrent with advances in their
understanding of social convention.
Influences on Gender Stereotyping and Gender-Role Adoption
The case for biology: Is there cross-cultural similarity in ge
Male (instrumental) traits: competent, rational, selfassured.
Female (expressive) traits: warm, caring, emotional.
Childrens Display of Sex-Stereotypes
By 2, children have labels boy, girl, mommy, daddy.
Children associate these labels with activities and
The case for environment
Perceptions and expectations of adults
Baby X: adults see qualities fitting babys artificially assigned sex.
Indistinguishable male and female rated differently by parents:
Treatment by parents:
Are parents guided
We will use the term gender and sex:
Theories of Gender Development
Social learning theory
Theme 1: Nature and Nurture: All Interactions,
All The Time
The interaction of nature and nurture begins
Infants nature elicits nurture
A babys cuteness encourages
Teratogens and the use it or lose it
Who engages in differential treatment?
Fathers: encourage gender-appropriate behavior and place pressure on sons to
Teachers: reinforce feminine behaviors (obedience)
may create discomfort in boys but has LT consequences for girls.
Theme 7: Child Development Research
Can Improve Childrens Lives
Pick a good partner
Ensure a healthy pregnancy
Know which decisions are likely to have a
Form a secure attachment
Prepare older siblings for the babys
Boys slower maturation leads to stronger right-hemispheric
specialization in adolescence
Prenatal exposure to androgens: girls who receive more androgen do
better on mental rotation.
Male advantage by 13, very evident by high s